Summertime is all about BBQ and delicious fresh produce… so why not bring the two together in perfect harmony? You already know that I like to grill fruit on a stick, like with these grilled cantaloupe prosciutto skewers. Cantaloupe, however, is not the only fruit I like to caramelize on the grill. And while grilled pineapple is nothing new, I think there is room to spice it up a little from the classic slices thrown straight onto the grill. I love spicing it up in a healthy way, too. To me that means omitting the butter and sugar you might see in other recipes online. This recipe takes inspiration from backyard BBQs throughout the years and the Brazilian steak houses that grill pineapple with cinnamon, chili powder and sugar to serve alongside roasted ham. However, this version is healthier and cleaner. The only ingredients in these grilled pineapple skewers with cinnamon are just that: pineapple and cinnamon!
Naturally Sweet Desserts – no sugar needed
Pineapple is naturally sweet, so there’s no need to add extra sugar. The the natural sugars caramelize when the grill heats the pineapple, giving an added sweetness compared to fresh pineapple. The cinnamon also helps draw some of the moisture out of the pineapple to give an additional sweetness.
The best part of making these skewers is seeing people chose the grilled pineapple with cinnamon over cake! See if that happens the next time you make these. It’s what happened our last BBQ, and I was shocked. In my book, if you can make a natural, no-sugar-added dessert that people prefer over cake, then I say you’re doing something right. Enjoy!
Grilled Pineapple Skewers with Cinnamon Recipe
The skewers are a little more fun that traditional slices on the grill. Plus, they are easier to handle and eat while you are mingling around the BBQ. The most recent BBQ I was at involved several kiddos, and they enjoyed playing swords afterwards, so it’s also like a built in toy (stay safe!)
The recipe is pretty simple. A healthy paleo BBQ option, this grilled pineapple skewers with cinnamon recipe has two ingredients: pineapple and cinnamon. Similar to most kabob recipes using wooden skewers, you need to soak the wooden skewers first. The longer the better, but 2 hours will do. Then you use a knife to cut off the thick pineapple skin. You’ll cut the remaining pineapple into long strips and then coat them with cinnamon.
After that, you simply place them on a skewer and grill until slightly browned, which indicates that the natural sugars are beginning to caramelize.
Bring simple back to the backyard BBQ!
If you’re looking for more healthy Kabob ideas, check out these Grilled Cantaloupe Prosciutto Skeweres with Mint Chutney.
Grilled Pineapple Skewers with Cinnamon
- 1 pineapple
- 2 tbsp cinnamon
- wooden skewers
- Soak the skewers for 1-2 hours, the longer the better. If time allows, start soaking them earlier. You can begin soaking them up to 12-15 hours ahead of time.
- Cut the skin off the pineapple. Do this by holding the pineapple upright on a cutting board holding the leafs. Bring your knife from top to bottom of the pineapple slicing off strips of pineapple until all skin is removed.
- Cut the pineapple into Spears (see below for more detailed instructions)
- heat the grill to high
- evenly sprinkle cinnamon across the pineapple
- use your hands to make sure cinnamon evenly coats the pineapple spears
- Spear the pineapple slices with the soaked skewer. The goal is to keep the skewer inside the pineapple. If the spear leaves the pineapple, fold the pineapple slices over so that it secured fast on the skewer
- Place all spears directly on the grill and cook for 10 minutes
- flip to the other side and grill for 5-7 minutes
- remove, serve and enjoy!
How to cut the pineapple into spears
- slice the pineapple in half lengthwise, or hot-dog style. Lay the half flat side down on the cutting board.
- On each half, slice pineapple spears by taking your knife 1 inch above the cutting board and cutting into the center of the core.
- Repeat on each half